Renowned as Australia’s creative and cultural hub, Melbourne attracts inquisitive travellers with its charming laneways filled with street art, unique shops and award-winning restaurants. A stage for some of Australia’s greatest sporting and cultural moments, Melbourne wows its visitors with Victorian-era architecture, elegant streetscapes, leafy inner-city gardens and cultural institutions.
Things to do in Melbourne
Join thousands of locals at the heart of Melbourne’s thriving arts and theatre scene, Federation Square, which is surrounded by Melbourne’s top art institutions. Admire European, Asian and American art at NGV International and discover fascinating TV, film and digital media exhibits at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image. You can also watch award-winning plays at Melbourne Theatre Company or see works by Australia’s top contemporary artists at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art.
Looking for high-end fashion or unique handmade goods? Head south of the city to Chapel Street for vintage treasures or north to Fitzroy’s Rose St Artists’ Market to meet local designers. The city's hidden laneways and arcades also offer boutique shopping, while nearby department stores stock leading international brands. Simply wander around the CBD to discover designer labels and one-of-a-kind boutiques, such as Sandro Paris and Keshett.
Explore the city’s first-class cafe culture on Fitzroy and Acland streets, and at sunset head to St Kilda Beach, an easy 20-minute drive away, for dinner at one of the beachfront restaurants. St Kilda is the perfect coastal suburb, home to artisan sellers, fairy penguins along the pier and the historic theme park, Luna Park.
Experience Melbourne’s famous nightlife at unique bars, such as The Toff in Town, a lively bar with signature cocktails and cosy booths in Art Deco train carriages. Melbourne is a true 24-hour city with a range of late-night dining and bar options, including live music venues, DJ clubs and hip hole-in-the-wall whiskey and boutique beer bars. Highlights include Melbourne’s rock hub, Ding Dong Lounge, and the 24-hour American-inspired Butchers Diner.
For a quiet escape wander through colourful and diverse natural landscapes at the Royal Botanic Gardens or the Fitzroy Gardens. Time your visit for one of Melbourne’s year-round blockbuster events, from Broadway musicals and international performing artists to music festivals and national sporting events, including the AFL Grand Final.
Melbourne has a mixture of historic and contemporary transportation. Having serviced visitors and locals for over a century, Melbourne’s iconic trams offer hop-on-hop-off transport around the city centre and surrounding neighborhoods. The City Circle tram is a free tourist tram that loops around many of the city’s must-see central attractions between Flinders Street and Harbour Esplanade. Melbourne’s extensive transport network also includes trains and buses that travel throughout the CBD’s convenient grid layout.